Stress about finances is one of the most common and pressing concerns for individuals dealing with a workplace injury. The more serious the injury that resulted from a workplace accident, the more pressing the financial concerns it creates may become. If you’re going to miss more than a day or two of work, you shouldn’t have to use your paid time off benefits to cover your missing wages.
Injured workers probably already know that workers’ compensation will cover the cost of their medical care. What they might not understand is that workers’ compensation can also provide disability benefits. Those benefits help offset the lost wages that result from a worker’s injury and inability to work.
However, benefits through workers’ compensation are not necessarily automatic. You will need to file a claim to receive them. In some cases, you may need to appeal a denial or attend a hearing just to connect with the benefits you need to pay your bills.
Georgia workers can receive temporary disability benefits for workplace injuries
If an injury is bad enough to keep you from working for more than a couple of days, you can likely qualify for temporary disability benefits. These benefits will pay a portion of your wages, up to a maximum amount set by the state. Although it may not cover your entire income, it will certainly help you cover cost of living expenses.
Temporary disability benefits will only last a maximum of 350 weeks. After that time passes, a worker will either need to qualify for permanent partial disability or total disability or return to work, if possible. During your convalescent period, you can rely on that temporary disability income to help you bridge the income gap caused by your injury.
Don’t be afraid of seeking the benefits intended to support you
Even if you can return to work after a few weeks of rest or medical care, you may still qualify for temporary disability. That is exactly what it’s for. Workers whose injuries will persist and permanently prevent them from gainful employment have the option of seeking permanent disability benefits that will protect them for as long as their inability to work persists. Just because you will eventually get back to work doesn’t mean that you don’t need assistance now.
There is absolutely nothing wrong with seeking the benefits due to you through the state workers’ compensation insurance program. Your employer pays into the insurance program on your behalf to help ensure that you receive these exact benefits.
Whether you are initiating a workers’ compensation application or need assistance with an appeal, discussing your injury with an experienced workers’ compensation attorney is a smart first step toward accessing the benefits you need to survive after a workplace injury.